About Sharon Oden Johnson
The Honorable Sharon O. Johnson was elected to the Circuit Court of Cook County in November 2010. After being sworn in, she was assigned to the First Municipal Traffic Division, where she handled a variety of minor traffic offenses, minor and major criminal misdemeanors, and violations of supervision. Shortly thereafter, she was assigned to the Domestic Relations Division – Parentage and Child Support Section, where she remains today. She manages a docket of over 800 cases wherein she hears and rules on Orders of Protection, parentage, custody, visitation, and support matters.
A native of Chicago, Judge Johnson is a proud graduate of Chicago Public Schools. In 1992 she earned a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Bradley University, in Peoria, Illinois. Thereafter, in 1995, she graduated from Howard University School of Law, where she earned the AmJur Award for Property Law.
Prior to becoming a judge, Judge Johnson worked in both the private and public sectors. Immediately following law school, she was a judicial law clerk for the Honorable Judge Lawrence Lawson in the Monmouth County, New Jersey Circuit Court. She later returned to Chicago and worked as a lead contract negotiator with the City of Chicago’s then Mayor’s Office of Workforce Development. Thereafter she opened a boutique law firm which practiced primarily in the areas of real estate, contract, and family law.
Since ascending to the bench, Judge Johnson has been elected Secretary to the Illinois Judicial Counsel. She was appointed by the Illinois Supreme Court and continues to serve as faculty for the 2014 Judicial Education Conference. In 2013, Judge Johnson served as a member of the Domestic Relations Alternative Dispute Resolution Exploratory Committee. She continues to serve as an Honorary Member of the CARPLS Civic Committee while contributing to the betterment of Cook County by serving as a panelist for several Continuing Legal Education courses. In 2013, she served as Judicial Coordinator for the 2013 Cook County Bar Association Law Day subsequent to receiving the 2012 Illinois Judicial Counsel Chairperson’s award. In a uniquely international capacity, Judge Johnson has served as the Co-Chair of the Illinois Judicial Counsel Liberian Committee and moderated a forum entitled “Liberia: Restructuring of a Legal System in a Reemerging African Nation.” Judge Johnson’s service to the residents of Cook County includes but is not limited to serving as a guest speaker at many churches, schools, and civic organizations.